The New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets (AGM), Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation (Parks), The Olana Partnership, and the New York State Bridge Authority today joined together to celebrate local food, beverages, and art in the historic Hudson Valley region. In celebration of the program’s 10th anniversary, AGM Commissioner Richard A. Ball visited Olana State Historic Site in Hudson to highlight the Taste NY selections in Olana’s Museum Store, operated by The Olana Partnership. The visit coincided with the annual Skywalk Arts Festival, presented by Historic Bridges of the Hudson Valley in partnership with the New York State Bridge Authority. The annual festival celebrates centuries of art and scenery at the Hudson River Skywalk, which connects the Olana State Historic Site with the Thomas Cole National Historic Site via the Rip Van Winkle Bridge.
Commissioner Ball said, “The strength of our Taste NY program lies in its ability to bring together New York’s farmers, producers, and artisans and connect them with new audiences. As we celebrate the 10th anniversary of Taste NY this year, there is no better place to showcase what’s unique about the program than by highlighting its presence at the Olana State Historic Site and the Skywalk Arts Festival. From food to art, we are all here today celebrating what’s best about the Hudson Valley region and our state as a whole – our partnerships, our cooperation, and the many people who produce the unique and diverse products that show off the best of New York State.”
Parks Commissioner Erik Kulleseid said, “What a great way to transition from summer into fall – and in a special spot in the Hudson Valley, Olana. This 10th anniversary Taste NY celebration reinforces agricultural tourism in an historic setting and does so with great local food and art. Thank you to the vendors and producers of these unique products and enjoy the day at one of the most inspirational settings in New York State.”
The celebration at Olana State Historic Site brought together regional agricultural, tourism, and supporting partners to introduce visitors to the New York farmers and producers whose products are available at the Olana Museum Store, operated by The Olana Partnership. Vendors sampling at the event included Wicked Finch, Silda’s Jam, CurrantC, and Fox Farm.
The event was designed to showcase the diverse and unique products grown and made in the State. It is part of a series of events that are taking place across the state in recognition of the 2023 10-year milestone of the Taste NY program and its success over the last decade, including over $100 million in economic impact to New York State producers since its launch. New York State products can now be found at nearly 70 locations across New York State, including the Olana Museum Store at Olana State Historic Site, the State’s 11 regional Welcome Centers, airports, State parks, the Javits Center, and more.
The Olana Partnership, the 501(c)(3) not-for-profit cooperative partner of the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation at Olana State Historic Site, opened its Taste NY offerings in the Olana Museum Store in 2017. All proceeds support the interpretation, restoration, and protection of the site.
In addition to the Olana Historic Site event, AGM also took part in the annual Hudson River Skywalk Arts Festival. The festival presented local painters and photographers, as well as Stasia Fernandez and her popular painting classes, and the instrumental music of David Temple and Brian Silber. The AGM booth at the Festival showcased Taste NY producers and products local to the Hudson Valley Region and highlighted the program’s and Festival’s connection to Olana.
Dr. Minosca Alcantara, Executive Director of the New York State Bridge Authority said, “The Bridge Authority is thrilled to be part of this celebration of Taste NY’s 10th anniversary, on the same day as the Skywalk Arts Festival. Since its opening in 1935, the Rip Van Winkle Bridge has been an important mover of goods for the region’s farms and businesses. Today, the bridge also serves as an important conduit for the Hudson Valley’s tourism economy, being the crucial link along the Hudson River Skywalk between the historic homes and artist studios of Thomas Cole and Frederic Church.”
Sean Sawyer, Washburn & Susan Oberwager President of The Olana Partnership said, “The Olana Partnership congratulates Taste NY on its 10th Anniversary. We are proud to have been a Taste NY destination since 2017, continuing the Church family tradition of offering visitors the best of local food and beverages.”
Amy Hausmann, Director, Olana State Historic Site said, “The land where Olana is sited was farmed for generations before artist Frederic Church built his own farm here in 1860. We are so pleased to continue that agricultural tradition by supporting producers and growers and partnering with Taste of NY and The Olana Partnership to offer our visitors a rich variety of delicious, locally grown products from the great State of New York.”
Kathryn Burke, Director of Historic Bridges of the Hudson Valley said, "The iconic bridges of the NYS Bridge Authority were built to transport NYS produce and products to points locally, across the country, and around the world. On September 16th, we're excited to bring together celebrations of our Hudson Valley artists, during our 7th annual Skywalk Arts Festival, with the celebration of our many products and produce that are distinctive to New York, during the 10th anniversary year of Taste NY."
Senator Michelle Hinchey said, “Over the past decade, Taste NY has played a crucial role in raising regional awareness of the exceptional products grown and produced by our farmers and artisans right here in New York State. It is an honor to welcome NYS Agriculture and Markets to the Hudson Valley to the picturesque setting of the Olana State Historic Site as we celebrate the 10th anniversary of Taste NY. Here’s to many more years of fostering connections between New York agribusinesses and consumers!”
Lisa Marie Layman of Fox Farm Apiary said, “A taste of our honey reveals the rich and complex terroir of the Empire State transformed by these essential pollinators, the honey bees. Fox Farm Apiary is delighted to partner with the Museum Store at Olana and share the shelves with their fine selection of vendors representing Taste NY.”
About Taste NY
Taste NY highlights the quality, diversity, and economic impact of food and beverages grown, produced, or processed in New York State. Taste NY aims to create new opportunities for producers through events, retail locations, and partnerships, such as at The Great New York State Fair and the Barclays Tournament at Bethpage State Park. Over the last 10 years, Taste NY has supported nearly 2,000 food and beverage producers participating in the program through retail outlets, events, and sponsorships. In 2022, 311 new producers were onboarded to the program through New York's Welcome Centers. Taste NY's food and beverage businesses also support the state's farmers by using New York grown and produced ingredients in their products.
About Olana and The Olana Partnership: Olana is the greatest masterwork of Frederic Edwin Church (1826-1900), a preeminent American artist of the mid-19th century and the most important artist’s home, studio, and designed landscape in the United States. Church designed Olana as a holistic environment integrating his advanced ideas about art, architecture, landscape design, and environmental conservation. Olana’s 250-acre artist-designed landscape with five miles of carriage roads and a Persian-inspired house at its summit embraces unrivaled panoramic views of the Hudson Valley and Catskill Mountains and welcomes more than 170,000 visitors annually. Olana is open for guided touring, and reservations are highly recommended. Olana’s public park is free and open to all, every day from 8 AM - sunset.
Olana State Historic Site, administered and operated by the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation, is a designated National Historic Landmark and one of the most visited sites in the state. The Olana Partnership is the 501(c)(3) not-for-profit cooperative partner of the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation at Olana State Historic Site.
About New York State Parks
The New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation oversees more than 250 parks, historic sites, recreational trails, golf courses, boat launches and more, which saw a record 79.5 million visits in 2022. For more information on any of these recreation areas, visit parks.ny.gov, download the free NY State Parks Explorer app or call (518) 474.0456. Join us in celebrating our Centennial throughout 2024, and connect with us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and the OPRHP Blog.
About Historic Bridges of the Hudson Valley
Historic Bridges of the Hudson Valley (HBHV), is a non-profit organization originally formed under the auspices of the New York State Bridge Authority to capture and share the rich history embedded in the Hudson Valley’s beloved bridges. HBHV was created to promote the public awareness and general knowledge of the Hudson Valley’s bridge history including their role and contributions in shaping the economy; provide STEM education opportunities for educators and students utilizing the NYSBA bridges; and to serve as curator and custodian of historical artifacts regarding the bridges owned and maintained by the New York State Bridge Authority.
About the New York State Bridge Authority
The New York State Bridge Authority operates the Bear Mountain, Newburgh-Beacon, Mid-Hudson, Kingston-Rhinecliff and Rip Van Winkle Bridges. It also owns and maintains the structure of the Walkway Over the Hudson pedestrian bridge. The Authority receives no operating funding through state or federal tax dollars, with nearly all of its revenue coming through tolls. Tolls are reinvested back into capital improvements on the Authority’s spans, ensuring these critical pieces of infrastructure can continue serving the Hudson Valley for decades to come. Connect with the Bridge Authority on Facebook and Twitter.